Can Artists be Separated from their Politics?
A Discussion about Peter Handke’s Nobel Prize for Literature 2019
free and open to the public
light refreshments provided
Austrian author Peter Handke (*1942) won the 2019 Nobel Prize for Literature “for an influential work that with linguistic ingenuity has explored the periphery and the specificity of human experience.” Handke also defended Serbia during its genocidal attacks and war crimes during the Yugoslavian war and spoke at the funeral of Serbian ex-President and war criminal Slobodan Milošević a decade later. Numerous organizations and individuals, including PEN International and numerous writers and officials from former Yugoslavia, have denounced his selection as Nobel Laureate because of Handke’s political position. We invite the community to join us in discussing the prize and the controversy. Links to selections from Handke‘s writings, including on Serbia, and statements about his award can be found below. Participants are encouraged to read these materials before the discussion.
For questions, please contact:
May Mergenthaler, firstname.lastname@example.org
In preparation for the discussion you are invited to read the following excerpts and articles:
1. Writings by Peter Handke
a) A Sorrow Beyond Dreams. A Life Story. Transl. by Ralph Manheim. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1975, pp. 3-22.
Wunschloses Unglück. Erzählung. Frankfurt/Main: Suhrkamp, 1974 , pp. 11-28, 73-78 (chronology of Handke’s life up to 1974) (Editor's notes are included as well) Link coming soon!
b) A Journey to the Rivers: Justice for Serbia. Transl. by Scott Abbott. New York 1997, 1-7; 12-17.
Eine winterliche Reise zu den Flüssen Donau, Save, Morawa und Drina oder Gerechtigkeit für Serbien, Frankfurt/Main: Suhrkamp, 1996, pp. 11-20; 29-36.
2. The Nobel Prize 2019 for Peter Handke in the News